How To Create Peace Between You…

Now that the holidays are here, is there someone in your life who gets on your nerves and annoys you to the point of frustration? Maybe your boss, co-worker, neighbor, friend, life partner? Most people know someone like this. If you do, then you know that uncomfortable feeling that bubbles beneath the surface and drives you up a wall.

Years ago I worked in a pharmacy with a verbally abusive boss. Then one day I exploded, and we had a yelling fight across the store. I thought for sure I’d be fired. But when I carried my loud voice behind his counter, he was doubled up with laughter. I yelled, “What the hell are you laughing at?” With a wide grin, he answered, “I wondered how long it would take you to stand up for yourself. Bout time.” After that, he treated me with respect, and we ended up with a good relationship. However, I wouldn’t recommend my behavior to anyone. Don’t yell at your boss.

“People may hear your words, but they feel your attitude.”  ~Unknown

Over time, I’ve learned better ways to improve my own response to people who push my buttons. There’s room for change on both sides. First look at your own responses, and honestly question any hangups that may precipitate or contribute to the other person’s behavior. Am I being unreasonable? Do I expect too much? Do I respond from my own insecurity? Is there something to me that needs to change? Look for answers, and make necessary changes if you need to. If you feel comfortable talking to the other person, do it. If not, there are other ways to bring about change.

One time I worked with a team of people and our Supervisor’s answers to the others were usually ‘yes’, but always ‘no’ to me, sometimes with a somewhat hostile attitude. I was confused and made every effort to please. But no change. Then I went to my Minister for help, and she recommended the following exercise. I used it each day, and in about a month, I saw changes with my Supervisor. Eventually, we became friends, and I valued her friendship.

Recommended Exercise: Your goal is to change the negative energy between you to positive energy, thus changing the behaviors.
1. Take a deep breath, close your eyes, and imagine looking at the other person.
2. Then say, “I love you, I bless you, I release you to your highest good.”
3. Now take another deep breath, and let go. Let go. Let go.

When you say these words, you’re sending the other person a love your neighbor type of love–the kind that’s wired in us to love others. At first, you may not feel these words, so saying them may be difficult. But you’re affirming blessings in their life, and you’re releasing them, and ultimately yourself, from negative energy between you. So say the words anyway. In most cases, this exercise does work if you stay with it. And you might just find the peace you long for between you.

 

 
“You can’t change someone who doesn’t see an issue in their actions.” ~Unknown

Not everyone is going to cooperate and make the change you want in your relationship. And it may be someone you can’t or don’t want to release from your life. But you don’t have to remain on the receiving end of their inappropriate behavior. Set boundaries with a plan to avoid emotional disturbance from a difficult person.

Boundary Examples: “I will be caring and considerate of your feelings; I will use yes or no when needed, and mean it; I will listen when you’re talking to me, but will walk away if your words or manner are hurtful; etc, etc. And I will grant you the same courtesies.” Create and present the plan appropriate to the person involved, such as your boss at work, your life partner, whoever, etc.

“A miracle is a shift in perception from fear to love.”  ~Marianne Williamson 

Some people have a fear of losing control and will resist change. So if someone refuses your miracle, then honor it yourself as much as possible. You’re a special person with a right to peace and love in your life. Go for it, and be happy.

I wish you peace created between the both you.

Marilyn Fowler, Author of   “Silent Echoes” and Me and Granmama in the Hill Country Available Amazon online…

 

An image posted by the author.

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Release Clutter And Nourish Your Soul. Part 2 Inner Clutter…

Clutter in our outer world is tangible things with visual color and texture you can touch. But the inside stuff rolls around in your head and heart, and you carry it with you every day. You wake in the morning, and it beckons your attention. And if you’re an inside clutterer, you answer its call.

“If it can be solved, there’s no need to worry, and if it can’t be solved worry is of no use.”  ~Dalai Lama

Like outer clutter, inner clutter occurs in different amounts and intensity. At best, you might experience occasional worry like rushing to catch a bus when you oversleep or forget to cancel an appointment, etc. For those, you might fret and say a few choice words, but then deal with it and not let it become an unnecessary burden. Then more intense is worry over one main issue you just can’t release a lost relationship or a mistake you can’t go back and correct. And your strong feelings hold it to you. You see no resolution, and you can’t stop obsessing over it every day.

The most troublesome situation is when multiple issues build up inside with focus on many painful feelings that won’t stop. And they become a source of daily rumination without resolution. Oryou retain feelings from the past like sorrow, regret, anger, etc. And a trigger like a song or a sudden memory can create an ongoing reaction. You can even get into, “What if this happens, or what if that happens,” before anything worrisome happens. Inner clutter fills your thoughts, and you feel there’s no way out.

Outer clutter in our surroundings influences the way we feel. But it doesn’t require constant attention, and daily activities furnish a respite. Inner clutter is a different phenomenon. Your thoughts are part of you. And for a person who’s caught up in a daily battle with obsessive thinking, the relentless invasion of worrisome thoughts can reach down to the soul and leave them anxious, depressed, and exhausted. Just living day to day becomes a challenge.

“Non-resistance is the greatest power in the Universe.”  ~Eckhart Tolle

When mental clutter piles up, you try to make it stop. But it won’t budge. You try pushing it out of your mind, but it gets stronger. And you push harder. So it goes, over and over. Well, there’s a saying, “Resistance breeds persistence.” And it does. So stop resisting. Once you let it be, you can get to ways that will release it and bring you peace. And there are ways to do that.

First, give yourself permission to release the clutter. Then voice your intention to stop obsessing, and verbalize a vow to break loose. Be firm.

Prepare with self-talk, and speak to your thoughts with love as often as needed. Repeat,“I’ve been approaching problems with worry, and that doesn’t work. I’m smart enough to handle whatever needs my attention and let the rest go. And thoughts, I don’t need you now. I’m taking charge, and we’re going to be happy.”

“If it doesn’t nourish your soul, get rid of it.”  ~Unknown

Consider the difference between worry and concern. Worry is clutter, it doesn’t solve problems. Concern implies relevance and importance and is a valid place to begin releasing the clutter. So list everything you’re worried about, and rate each item by how relevant and important it is and how much you ‘need’ to be concerned about it…0 being not at all, and 10 being a lot. Then choose items you can solve without worry.

“A miracle is a shift in perception from fear to love.”  ~Marianne Williamson

Imagine a large balloon, and drop items you’re releasing into the balloon. Seal the top, and wave goodbye with forgiveness and love as you watch it float upward and disappear into the sky. Feel your shoulders lighten and your mind clear. Now you have nourished your soul.

It may take additional efforts to finally stop cluttering your mind. But continue the clearing procedure as needed, and your mind will eventually develop a ‘stop button’. And you can truly be free. A long time ago, ongoing efforts worked for me, and I’m grateful.

I wish you a peaceful mind and heart.

Marilyn Fowler, Author of  

“Silent Echoes” and Me and Granmama in the Hill Country Available Amazon online…

 

 

An image posted by the author.



The Depression Pit: Part 1. “There Is Hope and Help From Depression.”

The Depression Pit: Part 1. “There Is Hope and Help From Depression.”

Ten years ago as I watched the miners in Chile being rescued from underground, I couldn’t help thinking about other kinds of dark pits that we humans experience–the kind we can’t see or touch, but just as frightening–a place called depression. It seems as I have read from others it is like being lost in a black abyss with no way out.

I am also sure there are times when everyone feels a degree of depression. It’s part of our human experience. But some feel it down to a desperate place of soul suffering. Just as no one can fully understand the pain those miners went through, no one can fully understand the pain of depression unless they’ve been there, ‘been through it’ so to speak. But the darkness, fear, and despair can be equally painful. And being in a dark pit seems like an appropriate analogy.

 “Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.” ~John Wooden

As long as we’re in the human condition, we’re exposed to painful experiences–some on the outside, some on the inside, and some in both. But with depression, no matter the source of the pain, it seems to hurt everywhere. It can actually immobilize us to a state of inertia where it feels like a permanent condition from which there is no escape.

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“Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it.”  ~Helen Keller

But just as those brave miners escaped, there is hope for those who know the prison of depression. There is in each of us a will to live. It’s our greatest gift–the key to freedom. We can use it if we search and find it. One step is one step closer to abundant life, and the first step could be the intention.

“A good intention clothes itself in power.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

In part two, I’ll talk about some steps we can take to crawl out of the dark pit. There is a way out, even if we can’t see it when we’re at the bottom. The light is there.

Peace be with you ’til we meet again.

Marilyn Fowler, Writer/Author of   “Silent Echoes” and Me and Granmama in the Hill Country Available Amazon online…

An image posted by the author.

Are We Connected or Separate? Truth or Delusion? Are We All One?

 

 

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Individually we are one drop. Together we are the ocean.” ~Ryunosuke Satoro

Just as many drops of water are part of the same ocean, each person on earth is part of the same human family. And we’re all connected by energy.There’s nothing that’s not energy…including us. And this energy moves among us, uniting us, connecting us as one earth family. We can’t exist alone.We’re connected. And we need each other. Our life is within us, but it’s kept alive through our connection with others.

I sit here thinking about what I want in my life, and I realize it’s not only about me. It’s about all of us and the world we live in. My mind runs in two dimensions. What do I want for me? And how can I exist without you…all of you? It may seem impossible that my intentions, my desires, can affect anyone but me. But there is power in the energy I project with my thoughts. And what I envision today for myself and others can manifest in positive and negative ways far beyond what I imagine.

“Knowing a person is like music. What attracts us to them is their melody, and as we get to know who they are, we learn their lyrics.”   ~Unknown

I remember when I was a child during the Great Depression years, and my family lived in a large apartment building in Detroit. We were the only American-born family there. All the others were from different countries. Everyone left their doors open during the day, and I had such fun sneaking in front of each apartment door listening to different languages spoken, smelling ethnic foods cooking, being part of a wonderfully diverse world. We shared whatever we had, and offered love and compassion in the hard times. In spite of our differences, we were a family. We were connected.

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“If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten we belong to each other.” ~ Mother Teresa

Today we live in an ‘us and them’ world, choosing separation over togetherness. We look down on others unlike ourselves to the point of bigotry, contempt, even hatred. We attend worship services and then condemn those different from us. And we blame others when misfortune invades our tightly knit lives. On TV we see the result of separation producing senseless loss of life. And we bolt our doors at night to feel safe. We produce enough negative energy to build a thousand tombs to hold the spoils of separation. And we don’t know we’re connected. When I abuse my brother, I abuse myself.

Albert Einstein explains our delusion of separateness. “A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”

 

 

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What do you want, really want, in your life? Think about it. What you envision today and hold in your mind can bring blessings in your own life and can make a difference in the world where those blessings are needed. Start with people close to you, and gradually move out to those you don’t know. Use understanding and compassion without judgment. Then allow your love energy to embrace your entire world family.

What a responsibility we have. Yes, responsibility. Each day is a new day to live life in more meaningful ways, ways that not only help determine the quality of your own life but for all those millions with whom you are connected. You may not personally see the blessings you provide with your loving thoughts, but they will land where they’re needed. And you will be blessed.

I wish you peace and joy in all the days ahead. 

Marilyn Fowler, Author/Writer ~  (My Books make great a gift for the holidays!)

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A Time For Renewal, Cycles, and Rebirth

Everything in the universe moves in cycles, and these cycles are necessary to live. The moon tells the oceans when to ebb and flow, seasons tell us when to sow and reap, and darkness tells us when our day should end. Our whole universe is involved in cycles, including us. We leave one phase and enter a new one. And each cycle offers some kind of rebirth and renewal. And all of nature shouts it’s claim to a new springtime, “Look at me. I’m alive, expressing who and what I am.”

“Spring is when you feel like whistling even with a shoe full of slush.”  ~Doug Larson

Snow has melted, and crunchy slush takes over. It’s springtime again…life coming forth at just the precise time and in the precise way according to nature’s plan. Trees turn green, blossoms of every color discard their buds, butterflies emerge from cocoons, bears come out of their caves and stretch in the warm sun, and every little fuzzy critter scampers to explore what his buddies are up to. Every year we’re treated to nature’s brand new technicolor presentation of rebirth and renewal. And it’s breathtaking.

I remember when I was a child in Michigan, and springtime wrapped her arms around the earth and replaced the drab haze of winter with her gifts of rebirth and renewal. I saw it in fields of tulips with every color in the rainbow and in blue and yellow wildflowers pushing up randomly along my path to school. I listened to birds and night owls pouring their songs into springtime air becoming reacquainted with lost friends and celebrating new ones. I felt spring breezes and warm sun caressing my bare legs when I discarded my leggings until the next cold winter. I watched lightning dart across the sky heralding springtime rain. And then I danced in the rain, hopped through puddles, and tasted rain drops on my tongue.

Every spring I joined nature in her celebration. With all of my senses, I was part of this glorious transformation. I saw life in nature, and I felt life in myself like we were part of each other in God’s great universe. I saw it and felt it everywhere. Then I grew up and forgot to notice. And springtime grew to mean days were longer, we could save on the electric bill, and vacation time was getting closer. Where did joy of the season go? Recently I looked around and realized it’s all still there…every year.

“There is something infinitely healing in the repeated refrains of nature.” ~Rachel Carson

Fall and winter energy pulls us in and says slow down, let go, and regroup. Spring and summer energy pushes us out and says move forward, take on the new, and express your colors. Just like everything in nature we’re wired for seasonal change, physically, mentally, and spiritually. And we can’t help responding to those seasonal changes. We can either respond with resistance and become more physically disturbed and less motivated, or we can answer the call and become more healthy and invigorated.

Now is when old painful experiences can pass away and make room for a new beginning, like flowers budding anew after a hard freeze. We’ve all been through those hard freezes. But we need to open our eyes to the possibilities that present themselves every spring. Do you ever think about rebirth and renewal within yourself, or are you content to continue living in the old script you’ve written for your life? Everyone creates a script. It’s like a recipe for living, and we act it our everyday. We may have visions or dreams of how we’d like to change it, but most of the time those fade away, and our springs come and go as they always have.

“Those who plow in hope not only understand the law of the harvest, but they also understand what growing seasons are all about.”  ~Neal A. Maxwell

How about taking a lesson from the tulips or butterflies, or like the bear, be brave enough to come out of your cave. Within each of us is a light so bright you can write a whole new script and experience positive changes in your life. A time of rebirth. A time of renewal. Search deep within. What are your colors? What is your song? What are the words you want to say? Someone said, “Your wings already exist. All you have to do is fly.” So spread your wings and fly. It’s your springtime.

I wish you beautiful discoveries in your springtime.

Marilyn Fowler, Author of  “Silent Echoes”

Heal Your Total Self by Healing Your Inner Child…

Many, if not most people today are familiar with Eric Berne’s psychological theory regarding the parent, child and adult ego states, different parts of ourselves from which we function. The parent expresses our value systems, morals, and beliefs, and may be critical or nurturing. The child is our feeling self. And the adult uses rational thinking and problem-solving and tries to keep the parent and child in balance. If we become familiar with these parts of ourselves, we can work with them and create a healthier, happier life.

“We’ve all had traumas and painful experiences as children. But you don’t have to be adversely affected by the past when you start healing the child within.”    ~Unknown

Since the child is our feeling self, when you feel sad, hurt, angry, scared, frustrated, any painful feelings, that’s your child crying for help. And your child needs attention. We’re all human, and we will have those feelings sometimes. They’re part of life, and we can’t totally shut down all negativity. But you can be aware of your feelings, know where they’re coming from, and turn to your inner child with love and compassion. You can learn to diminish the negative and increase the positive feelings. And your inner child, and thus you can learn to be happier.

“It is necessary to own and honor the child you were in order to love the person you are.” ~ Robert Burney

As you become more familiar and relate more with your inner child, you’ll know right away how to work out any painful feelings. And you and the child part of you will feel more like the one person you are. But it’s also important to recognize your parent self, the self that can be critical or nurturing, and your adult self with its rational thinking and problem-solving skills. Then when your parent self-gets critical, you can call on your adult self to handle the situation and free your inner child from more hurt.

“She held herself until the sobs of the child inside subsided entirely. I love you, she told herself. It will all be okay.”  ~Raven Rose

Seems like you go in and out of different characters, doesn’t it? Well, all 3 of them are you, and whether you know it or not, you’ve been using all of them all of the time…crying with pain, criticizing yourself, and your adult self-intervening.

Example Scenario: Suppose someone said something unkind to you, and you were hurt and cried (That’s your child self). Then a voice in your head said, “Oh, can’t take it, huh? Stop that blubbering (That’s your parent self). Then you dried your tears and told yourself, “Never mind. You’re loved and you do matter (That’s your adult self-soothing your inner child feelings). We use all parts of our self automatically.

Now there’s another side to all of this. While you’re healing the hurts and drying the tears, your inner child would really like to have some funl. You know, the things you used to do before you got so busy. So let her/him out sometimes. Sing with the birds, make funny faces and laugh at yourself, walk in the rain, dance around the house, eat an ice cream cone and let it melt down your belly. The list is endless. The more you laugh, the less pain you will feel. And it will be so much easier being you.

“There is a child inside all of us who continues to believe that it can always get better. That it doesn’t end here.”  ~Vienna Pharaon

When your child self is happy, you look up instead of down. It raises your sights to who you really are…God’s beautiful creation who only wants good in your life. You have the strength to successfully meet life’s challenges. You have the wisdom to make wise choices and create peace instead of pain. You have the courage to bring what’s good for you into your life and rule out what’s not. You live each day with faith and hope. And you learn to love your wonderful self. You heal your inner child, you heal yourself. And life can be so good.

I wish you fun being you.

Marilyn Fowler, Author of  ““Silent Echoes” and writer for “Keys To Recovery” …

How Do You Respond When Unexpected Life Challenges Knock You To Your Knees?

Life itself is a series of problem-solving. That’s what we do. We move through each day on various levels of energy, sometimes easy going and sometimes difficult. Everything affects everything else. So with experience, we learn what to expect and how to handle what we encounter. And we do pretty well in that environment. But what about those unexpected situations that suddenly arise without warning. Sometimes they seem to come out of nowhere and may be the result of our own actions. Most of the time they’re fixable situations, but some can put your life in turmoil.

“It’s the unexpected that changes our lives.”   Unknown

Some unexpected situations may seem fairly minor but can skyrocket your stress level….like when you’re ready for work and discover your car has a flat time or you forget to register your kid for summer camp; etc. Those situations can force you in a direction you didn’t know was coming.

On a more serious side, you suddenly lose your job; or a major health issue invades your life and robs you of your independence. A few years ago after a hurricane had passed, a gigantic tree limb crashed to the ground in my back yard. I was grateful it spared my house, but the thundering sound was deafening, and I was frozen to the shaking floor. Removing that tree limb became a major challenge.

Another time through no fault of mine, I was suddenly in a serious car wreck. I spent 2 months in residential treatment, and went from a wheelchair to a walker and then a cane. Recovery was long and hard, and I didn’t drive for a year. Serious yet, if you suddenly lose a loved one, this kind of unexpected trauma requires some inner healing and time with others close to you for understanding and comfort. And the loss may always be there.

“Life is not the way it’s supposed to be. It’s the way it is. The way you cope with it is what makes the difference.”   ~Virginia Satir

We all respond in different ways to the unexpected. Sometimes the first response is to get hung up on ‘What ifs’. What if I’m late for work; what if my kid thinks I forgot because I don’t care; What if I can’t find another job; what if I never get well; what if there’s another limb ready to fall; what if I’ll never walk again; what if I can’t recover. Or you might dive right in with an immediate action. If there’s danger like a fire, you’d probably swallow your panic and get help right away.

“What gets measured, gets managed.”   ~Peter Drucker

Unless you’re facing an emergency, your first concern should be what you’re feeling inside. Panic, even the initial stress, can cloud your mind, and you could miss your best options for a solution. Just a few moments within can make a big difference in your outcome. If you can, let the problem be, and identify what’s going on inside. What are you feeling….panic, fear, trauma, anger, regret, sadness, grief? What is it, and how severe? Notice your breathing. Any racing thoughts? Now take some deep breaths, and allow your body and mind to let go as much as possible. And give up the ‘what ifs’ and ‘ain’t it awful’….

When you’re a little calmer, just step back and gauge the size of the mountain. Ask, “How big is it really? What can I do about it? What happens if I can’t fix it? Where can I find help if I need it? etc.” Meet each day knowing you have what it takes to handle whatever comes up. And those puddles may not be as deep as they seem.

“Difficult roads often lead to beautiful destinations.”   ~Unknown 

If an unexpected situation is a result of your own mistake, never condemn yourself. Adding a problem to the one you already have does nothing beneficial. So don’t do it. Instead, say some affirmations. “I am strong enough to lick this tiger and smart enough to find a clear road ahead.”  Sometimes an unexpected difficulty now is the very thing that may lead you to that clear road ahead. Look for it with clear vision.

I wish you Peace in your Heart along the way.

Marilyn Fowler, Author/Writer

(Click Books to Purchase on Amazon)

 

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